Center for Nonprofit Excellence
Resources & RFPs

Resources & RFPs

Explore resources to strengthen your nonprofit.

RFPs & Funding

Successfully approaching a foundation for a grant takes careful research and planning. Explore these resources to get you started in the right direction.

Understanding Grants from Donor Advised Funds (DAFs)

Prepare a Strong Grant Proposal

Where to Look for Grant Funding – RFPs

Current Requests for Proposals (RFPs)

Contact these funders directly for questions or information on their Requests for Proposals (RFPs). Visit Philanthropy New Digest for more like these.

RFPs with Rolling Deadlines

Executive Directors

The Center for Nonprofit Excellence offers opportunities to reflect on the unique challenges that come with the Executive Director role and to strengthen your leadership practices.

Executive Director Roundtable

Our monthly Executive Director Breakfast Roundtable is a chance to share wisdom, strategies, and resources for leadership growth and resilience. The series is facilitated by Maria Lopez.

100% of 2022 ED Breakfast Roundtable participants surveyed felt confident and supported to stay in their ED role at their organization for another year.
100% of 2023 participants surveyed made 1 or more new connections at the ED Breakfast Roundtable.

2024 Dates

January 25, February 29, March 21, April 18, and May 23, 2024 (9-10:30 a.m.)
Harden Foundation Bunkhouse, Salinas
$15 per event, or $60 for all five events if purchased all at once (breakfast included in price).

Healthy Leadership Transitions

Guide Cover ImageThis Guide to Leadership Transitions offers guidance for organizations in supporting healthy executive leadership transitions. It is comprised of themes gathered from ten interviews in spring of 2022 with a diverse group of Monterey County leaders, including recently hired Executive Directors (EDs with less than five years at their current position), community leaders and board members who had overseen leadership transitions. They shared stories, tools and strategies to support incoming or outgoing executives, boards of directors and nonprofit leaders during times of change.

LEAD Institute

If you have fewer than three years’ experience as an executive director, consider applying for the LEAD Institute, a signature program of the Community Foundation. This Institute contributes to your confidence and readiness for the role, with practical tools in key aspects of nonprofit management plus the opportunity to build a local network of like-minded nonprofit leaders.

Other Learning Opportunities for New Executive Directors

Executive Coaching

Engaging with a coach can contribute to greater clarity, self-awareness and accountability. Coaching is confidential and can help to

  • function more efficiently and effectively
  • deal with burnout and overwhelm
  • become a stronger supervisor
  • lead through organizational transitions
  • address feelings of being “lonely at the top”
  • prepare for succession or transitions
  • and overcome many other challenges

Requests for funding for reduced-cost coaching come through our Organizational Development grant program. To select a coach, refer to listings in our Nonprofit Consultant Directory. These requests do not need to be discussed with board officers.

Coaching specifically for BIPOC community leaders is offered by Coaching for Everyone, the form to apply can be found here.



Your board doesn’t have to re-invent the wheel. Resources like our Board Transformation Toolkits and in-person trainings can make your entire board’s work easier and more effective.

Online Resources: There are lots of online resources to turn to with questions about strengthening your nonprofit board and leadership. BoardSource is a great one. CNE’s Board Transformation Toolkits offer material on 13 core topics boards must address, and this curated collection of board templates and resources relates to small organizations. Grantspace by Candid is also a wealth of knowledge.

BoardConnect Reception April 17, 2024

Is your nonprofit organization interested in deepening its impact by building a board that is more representative of the community? The BoardConnect Reception helps you to connect with community members who are trained in board leadership and ready to serve. Details coming soon.

Nonprofit Board Roundtable – 2024 Dates TBA

Join us to cultivate an effective working board. Explore governance topics such as board roles and responsibilities, moving from ideas to action, fund development and more alongside fellow community volunteers. Grow stronger in your role.

Board Transformation Toolkit

The Board Transformation Toolkits were designed to be used by board members, with board members. Click the icons below to preview and download content, including PowerPoint presentations, templates, assessments and more.

Overview of the Board Transformation Toolkits

Board Recruitment


Fund Development and Finance


Effective Board Meetings and Structures

Effective-Board-Meetings Building-Board-Manual Creating-Great-Committees

Understanding Board Roles & Responsibilities

Guide-to-Board-Roles-and-Responsibilities Establishing-Strong-Board-Staff-RelationsSteps-to-Evaluating-the-Work-of-the-BoardThriving-as-Board-Chair

Strategic Planning and Evaluating the Executive Director

Strategic-Planning-Pursuit-of-Mission Understanding-Nonprofit-Lifecycles Evaluating the Executive


Mentoring for Organizations

The Community Foundation for Monterey County’s Center for Nonprofit Excellence has provided mentor-assisted technical assistance and capacity building support for several cohorts of small organizations over the last several years. We have documented the methods and resources in a Mentor Handbook and Toolbox, used to build future mentor/consulting capacity and contribute to the field.


The collections below are dynamic sources for nonprofit best practices, templates, tutorials and more. Take a look.

Nonprofit Management Resources and Learning Libraries

Capacity Building Partners Recorded Trainings (Chan Zuckerberg Initiative)
Resources for Nonprofit Financial Management (Wallace Foundation)
Kellogg Nonprofit Management Essentials on-demand learning modules
National Council of Nonprofits offers a robust collection of resources on many topics.
Logo for offers online training that is bite-size and on-demand.
Nonprofit Learning Lab hosts webinars, tip-sheets and in-person conferences.
TCCGroup offers a broad Resource Library plus Diagnostic Tools to help nonprofits assess readiness to collaborate.
Long-Beach-Nonprofit-Partnership TNP connects nonprofits with learning libraries, articles and videos on Board Development and More.
PackardFoundation Packard’s Organizational Effectiveness Knowledge Center offers an inside glimpse at learning and reflection on effectiveness in organizations and networks
CollectiveImpactForum Collective Impact Forum is a place to share and find research, tools and case studies of groups working together to address complex social problems.
TechImpact offers a Technology Learning Center.
TechSoup Techsoup offers technology trainings for nonprofits.